By Ryan Rumbolt
A coyote named Chester was found hiding in a Brampton backyard. (Photo courtesy of City of Brampton)
A coyote named Chester has a new lease on life after being rescued from a backyard in Brampton.
Brampton Animal Services were recently called to a home in Brampton after receiving reports of a coyote hanging out in someone’s backyard.
Animal Control Officers arrived and located a lethargic canine sitting in the backyard who was very weak and covered in ticks.
The sickly coyote was given the name of Chester, who was then transported to the Shades of Hope Wildlife Refuge north of Toronto to get the proper care he needed.
After 12 days in rehab, Chester was released back into the wilds of Brampton where coyotes can thrive in rural areas.
Coyotes can live in ravines, valley lands and wooded areas in large cities, and Brampton Animal Services say coyotes are part of the local wildlife and they help control the population of small mammals, like mice, rats and rabbits.
While coyotes can be seen all year round in Brampton and are generally shy and non-confrontational, they can be curious and have been known to make a meal out of neighbourhood pets like cats and small dogs.
When encountering a coyote in the community, Brampton Animal Services says residents should stay calm and make themselves “loud and large.”
Here are some tips on what to do if you come face-to-face with a coyote and to avoid attracting them to your home.
It might feel difficult, but if you’re in the community and are approached by a coyote, remain calm. Do not give in to an instinct to turn and run, as this might provoke them to chase you. Try backing away slowly.
Don’t feed them
Feeding coyotes, intentionally or non-intentional can lead coyotes to associate humans with food, ultimately leading to negative interactions between coyotes, people and household pets.
Make yourself loud and large
If a coyote continues to approach you, it’s best to make yourself loud and large. You can stand tall and wave your arms, clap, shout, make startling movements, or open an umbrella, turn on a flashlight, or activate an alarm or loud noise on your phone. The goal is to startle the coyote into running away – do not chase or touch the animal. If you try to scare the animal but fear you are still at risk of immediate attack, call 911.
Take care of your home
Keep coyotes out of your home area by ensuring you have a solid, tall fence around your backyard. Remove any food sources such as unused fruits or vegetables, food residue in your barbeques, pet food, or birdseed on the ground.
Maintain your garbage containers and avoid composting meat products. Do not let your garbage overflow and store containers in a safe area, as they might attract small rodents, and in turn larger wildlife. Use tools to make your yard less attractive for wildlife such as motion-sensitive lights so your yard is less attractive for wildlife at night.
Call Brampton Animal Services
Animal services says members are always available to educate and inform, rescue, and respond to all inquiries about wildlife in Brampton.
If you see a deceased or injured coyote, call Brampton Animal Services.
Animal Control is on the road Monday to Friday from 7 AM to 10 PM, and on Saturday, Sunday and holidays from 8 AM to 6:30 PM and is available after-hours for emergencies.
You can reach Brampton Animal Services at (905)-458-5800.
If you see a coyote or other wild animal presenting an immediate threat to public safety, call 911.